tv NBC Nightly News With Lester Holt NBC September 10, 2015 7:00pm-7:31pm EDT
tonight in the cross hairs, drivers afraid for their lives as more shots are fired at cars in a city already on edge. police trying to find whoever is pulling the trigger before someone is killed. face-off, donald trump once again accused of attacking women, while he denies the new fight he picked with the only woman in the gop race is it about her looks? coming to america, thousands more refugees will be allowed into the u.s. on orders from the white house. the crisis hitting home while so many are left out in the cold overseas. and long lost relative, the discovery making news around the world, meet the distant cousin man kind never knew it had until this moment. "nightly news" begins right now.
>> announcer: from nbc news world head quarters in new york, this is "nbc nightly news" with lester holt. good evening. it may be the most anxiety-producing 14-mile stretch of highway in america. authorities confirmed today, for at least the 11th time in two weeks, a vehicle has been shot at and hit traveling down i-10 in phoenix where several more potential new cases right now under investigation. police say a shooter or shooters has been targeting motorists striking cars, trucks and buses, luckily, no one has been hurt so far but the fear of being hit is palpable for many. simply avoiding this route at all costs. miguel almaguer working that story for us tonight. >> reporter: today alone, five new reports of vehicles struck by projectiles, a semi struck hit by gunfire as the crime scenes here multiply. innocent drivers worry they may be in the
cross hairs of a shooter. >> who wants to drive on i-10 while there are bullets flying around? not me. >> reporter: motorists across phoenix are behind the wheel in fear. shootings dominating local news. >> we're starting with breaking news. it's been a very dangerous day for valley drivers on interstate 10. >> it's scary. it's really scary. >> reporter: many refusing to drive a 14-mile stretch of the interstate where windows have been shot out and bullets ripped through seats. aleecia chavez goes side streets and won't go close to i-10. >> it really takes us out of our way but for the safety of my son, it's worth it. >> reporter: tonight the highway patrol is on the lookout for what may be multiple shooters. >> looking for pedestrians on the overpasses, walking down the side of the road maybe hiding in the bushes. >> reporter: police siting the random pattern of at least 11 incidents, passenger cars, pickup trucks, commercial vehicles all targeted.
>> every one of these incidents is lethal. these are all potentially a homicide waiting to happen. >> reporter: police have no suspects and they are asking the public for help as they watch every road they can however they can. complicating the search, an armed civilian group is even patrolling the road surrounding the freeway. he was on the task force that captured the beltway snipers in 2002. >> it's very difficult for law enforce tonight catch somebody in the act if law enforcement has a high profile in one area, a suspect may go to another area where the police are not. >> reporter: tonight in phoenix, no leads as a community waits on edge. as investigators pour over multiple reports of possible shootings on this roadway every day, they are concerned the next driver will be hit by gunfire. they say they don't believe the shooter will stop here until they are caught. lester? >> miguel, thanks very much. turning to politics now, more good news for the
republican front runner for president donald trump surging to 32% in a new cnn national poll. but another political outsider is also surging in support. former neurosurgeon ben carson jumping to 10 points to 19%, perhaps that outsider repeal is why trump is now lashing out at carson and former hewlett packard ceo carly fiorina. launching personal attacks that are once again generating a storm of controversy. nbc's katy tur reports. >> reporter: three months in and donald trump is still on t rise and lashing out this time personally insulting his two biggest threats and two other outsiders in next wednesday's debate. on carly fiorina telling "rolling stone, could anyone vote for that. can you imagine that the next face for our president and ben
carson. >> he was a doctor, perhaps an okay doctor, by the way, we can check that out, too. we're not talking about a great, he was an okay doctor. >> reporter: trump not just defying the rules of political decorum but rewriting them, spear heading incorrectness something some embrace. do you think the name calling has gone too far for you? >> you know, i don't take it personally. i'm not real into being totally politically correct all the time. >> god can give anybody wisdom and i feel like the wisdom that trump has is from the lord, whether he knows it or not. >> why is there a double standard for him. >> people are willing to give a disruptor like trump a lot of latitude they don't give to others. >> reporter: how far does that support reach? this morning on "the view" trump getting an ear full on fiorina. >> i'm talking about her persona. >> talk about her brain instead of her face. >> you got to get more informed what is going on in women issues.
>> reporter: for her part, fiorina took it as a sign she's doing something right. >> maybe, just maybe i'm getting under his skin because i am climbing in the polls. >> reporter: and ready to stand her ground come wednesday. katy tur, nbc news, new york. senate democrats delivered a key victory for president obama today on the iran deal blocking a resolution of disapproval against the deal. republicans needed 60 votes but only got 58. house republicans are vowing the fight is far from over. as the tide of refugees from the war in syria continues to rise, so does the pressure to respond and today the obama administration said the u.s. would take in 10,000 of them in the next fiscal year. since the war began four years ago, the u.s. has taken in only about 1600 syrian refugees, most this year. meanwhile, hundreds of thousands are on the move, many seeking safe haven in europe that not all of them make it and getting there is far from the end of their struggle. our coverage begins with our chief foreign correspondent richard
engel in hungary. >> reporter: if things weren't hard enough in hungary, now it's raining and cold. we watched as refugees like this family from syria picked through donated clothing for something warm and dry. mothers swaddled their babies, others huddled at bus stops. volunteer haves come border area to give out ponchos, food and clothing, not the government, though. it's still treating this as a police problem. peter is emergency director of human rights watch. >> it appears that the hungary government wants to make this experience as miserable as possible for them. they take them from here on these buses to camps where they are held in pens like cattle really with very limited food and no information about what is about to
happen to them. >> reporter: why do you say hungary wants to make this a miserable process? >> hungary has the most right-wing government of europe and billboards up all over the country talking about, against immigration saying that the migrants will take jobs. so this is really a government with this basis of keeping these people out. >> reporter: but then we saw something extraordinary, sally whose family is from a damascus suburb completely destroyed was smiling, cradling her 1-year-old daughter. i'm happy she tells us because no matter how hard it is, it's better than the life we were living. sally and other relatives said good-bye, sending a message to worried loved ones back home that they are okay. the power of the human spirit to keep going. richard engel, nbc news, hungary. this is keir simmons. terrified family escapes syria for lebanon, her uncles
were executed, the family fled with dinner still on the table. they say poverty forced her to marry at just 12 a man in his 40s. were you happy to get marched? a little she tells us. that was last year. this week she had left her brothers and sisters for europe. we can't afford to follow her father says. millions like them have been left behind often the weakness and worst off. we've been following their stories. now in turkey lost her leg in an air raid when she was 12. she still suffers severe pain making a sea crossing is just too dangerous. i'm scared of the water she says. iya 15 lost her memory when a bomb hit her home 18 months ago. her family nursed her back to health. finally telling her
that her little sister was killed in the same attack. better than living like this she says. >> she told me that iman is happier than here. >> reporter: her mother told us they will not go to europe, they want to go home. >> i think americans and other countries, they can stop the war. they can stop the killing of children and woman and everybody killed in syria. >> reporter: but as the war grinds on now in the fifth year, going home is increasingly not an option and the tide of refugees already in europe can soon be joined by many, many more. keir simmons, nbc news on the turkey sir border. dramatic scenes out of japan as wide spread devastating floods left at least one person dead and several missing. the rushing waters carrying away entire
homes, forcing many on to rooftops. rescue choppers moving from building to building plucking the stranded to safety. one neighborhood was practically wiped off the map after a levee was breached. more than 100,000 people are forced to evacuate as a tropical storm brought more than 20 inches of rain over three days. back in this country, the commissioner of the nypd is apologizing to former tennis star james blake who says he was tackled and roughed up by undercover officers outside a new york city hotel in a case of mistaken identity. the incident was caught on camera but police have thus far refused to release the video amid an internal investigation now underway. rehema ellis has the latest. >> reporter: james blake is shaken and bruised but mostly shocked by his encounter with police. >> picked me up and body slammed me and told me to shut my mouth and put the cuffs on me. i said, look, officer, i'm scared so if i say something wrong i'm
sorry but i want to know what's going on. i think you have the wrong person. >> reporter: in an interview, blake said he was arrested and pinned down for 15 minutes by plain clothes officers. it all happened around noon yesterday here in front of one of new york's busiest hotels. blake says he was waiting for a ride to the u.s. open when he was slammed to the ground. a hotel surveillance camera captured it all on tape. police say five officers were trying to bust a credit card scam and a witness helping with the investigation mistakenly identified blake as a suspect. once ranked number four in the tennis world, blake says the force used by police was excessive. >> what would you like to hear from them? >> an apology. >> reporter: today he got that from new york's police commissioner. >> mr. blake had no role of involvement in the criminal investigation that we were conducting, and was totally innocent of any involvement. >> reporter: commissioner bratten says race was not a
factor. >> the rush to put a race tag on it, i'm sorry, that's not involved in this incident at all. >> reporter: the officer on modified duty, gun and badge taken away while james blake says he hopes the surveillance video becomes public soon. rehema ellis, nbc news, new york. the fda is launching what it calls the most sweeping overhaul of our food safety system in more than a century and it comes after a string of deaths linked to contamination in the kind of foods any one of us could have picked up from the supermarket. we get details from ann thompson. >> reporter: blue bell ice cream recalled for listeria and a ceo of a peanut contamination with a salmonella outbreak that sickened people in 46 states. two of the deadly food poisoning driving today's sweeping new federal safety rules. what do these changes mean for consumers? >> there will be fewer recalls and also fewer illnesses.
they can be more comfortable in buying food and serving it to their family because they won't get sick. >> reporter: instead of reacting to contamination, food manufacturers must now develop plans to prevent such outbreaks. one in six americans, 48 million people get sick from food born diseases according to the government, an estimated 3,000 people die each year. barbara has been fighting for change since she lost her 2-year-old son kevin after the toddler ate hamburger contaminated with e. coli. >> he went from healthy to dead in 12 days. since then my family is working to improve the food system to make sure this doesn't happen to other families. >> reporter: coming soon, standards for farmers and increased oversight of imported foods like the mexican cucumbers that sickened more than 340 people. to make sure your next bite is delicious and not deadly. ann thompson, nbc news, new york. still ahead here tonight, the american
women who went where few would dare, hand picked to become under ground astronauts, if you will, to make a discovery that's astounding the world and altering the history of humanity. also, the game he was all most barred from playing, tom brady moments away from kicking off a new nfl season in the aftermath of deflategate. y longer. so i talked to my doctor and he prescribed lyrica. nerve damage from diabetes causes diabetic nerve pain. lyrica is fda-approved to treat this pain. lyrica may cause serious allergic reactions or suicidal thoughts or actions. tell your doctor right away if you have these, new, or worsening depression, or unusual changes in mood or behavior. or swelling, trouble breathing, rash, hives, blisters, muscle pain with fever, tired feeling, or blurry vision. common side effects are dizziness, sleepiness, weight gain and swelling of hands, legs and feet. don't drink alcohol while taking lyrica.
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unknown ancestor, that stood about five-feet tall and it may never have been found without a team of women dubbed under ground astronauts. hallie jackson has more on this amazing find. >> reporter: normally, becca is in a lab coat, not hard hat, but here in south africa, she's about to head under grounground after answering a facebook ad looking for cave-diving scientists skinny enough to squeeze through seven-inch cracks and fearless enough to do it in the dark. >> it was an adventure and i certainly was excited to have an adventure. >> reporter: six women made the cut shimmying through 36 feet of tunnel, colleagues watching on fossil cam. as becca emerges with the find of a lifetime. >> you got the fossil, huh? >> yes. >> reporter: 1500 fossils from an entirely new species,
homo naledi, distant cousins humans never knew they had. it's like hitting the paleo powerball 1500 times. >> my mind is absolutely blown. this is absolutely an amazing discovery. >> reporter: steven churchill studied these skeletons 15 in all ranging in age from babies to elderly. the feet almost identical to humans. naledi walked upright but the hands more like apes with curved fingers good for climbing. >> helps fill in part of the story of human evolution. part of our ancestry. >> reporter: but scientists still don't know the exact age of the skeletons, though they are guessing around 2 million years old. or how the bones ended up in pristine condition in a prehistoric cave. >> the fossils raised more questions than they answer but that's a good position to be in in science. >> reporter: more answers may lie in the next adventure. the discovery of our beginnings just
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an update on a story we've been following closely here, the major backlog of rape kits sitting in laboratories and evidence collection rooms across 27 states. victims waiting for them to be tested to help catch their attackers. today federal and new york city officials announced a combined $79 million in funding to speed up the testing process on some 70,000 kits. there is a new warning tonight from federal forecasters about this year's monster el nino shaping up to be one of the strongest ever. just behind the power house of 1997 and '98 that sparked wide spread massive storms causing $4 billion in damage and killing nearly 200 people nationwide. noah weather experts are 95% certain it will last through the winter potentially dumping heavy rainfall in the west, though, not enough to bust the
historic drought. and the tongue twister that's gone viral, a weather man from the uk's channel four whose forecast include as tiny town with a name long enough to break tell la prompter, at 58 letters liam rattles it off flawlessly. >> sunshine in northwest wales just up to " llanfairpwllgwyngyllgo - chwyrndrobwllllantysil . >> i know that went by quickly. the name of the town once again was -- no, no, not going to do that. when we come back, high drama, tom brady takes the field but something important will be missing as the nfl season kicks off. we'll be right back. i'm always there for my daughter. for the little things. and the big milestones.
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from now here on nbc, something will be missing at the stadium in foxborough, mass where we find craig melvin. craig? >> reporter: lester, good evening to you, despite a steady rain, the faithful in fox burro extremely excited about seeing tom brady, their quarterback in uniform tonight. as you know, it's been an off season dominated with talk of deflated footballs. the patriots fined $1 million and lost two draft picks, brady suspended by nfl commissioner roger goodell when a federal judge threw out that four-game suspension last week, he chastised goodell for dueling out his own brand of industrial justice for the first time since becoming commissioner. goodell will not be at tonight's season opener saying he does not want to be a distraction. all the fans that i've talked to here say pretty much the same thing, they are ready for some football, lester. >> craig melvin, thanks. nfl coverage starts at 7:30 eastern time here on nbc. that is going to do it for us on this
captions paid for by nbc-universal television nbc sports, home of the 2016 rio olympics. the nhl. premier league. the nascar chase for the sprint cup playoffs and primetime's number one show, "sunday night football." only on nbc. gillette stadium in foxborough, ssachusetts, only yesterday it was in the 90s here. now, in the mid 60s. it's been raining most of the day and it's expected to do so throughout the game. but it's unlikely that will dampen the enthusiasm of a patriot crowd here to express appreciation for their super bowl champions, yes, but not incidentally to express their resentment over the events of the off season. an off season that finally gives way to football tonight.